Tuesday, November 12, 2013

What Can We Learn on Vacation?

What can you learn on vacation? Anything you want! Today I will be sharing pictures of some of our many trips to Silver Dollar City in Branson, MO. (I am not being compensated for sharing my opinion.) SDC is my favorite theme park because it has something for the whole family, and so many opportunities to learn as well!

This picture was taken inside Marvel Cave at SDC. The cave can be used to teach Geology, Stalactite/Stalagmite formation, Early exploration (especially if you take the Lantern Light Tour), Rock Layers, Temperature differences on and beneath the Earth's surface, animals found in caves, etc. There are many possibilities here for learning.

Map Reading and Navigation skills can be taught with minimal planning. Let your child lead, and help him reorient himself if he gets lost. Or, you lead, while pointing out landmarks and then see if your child can trace the route you took while looking at a map.

You may have to teach a little democracy as well. With more than one child, it is always interesting to see how they deal with the problem of what to ride first.

You could teach a lesson on flowers and plants, which are native, and which are not. Teach names of flowers, what types of soil are necessary to make flowers grow...or, in the case of these Hydrangeas, you can even work in a lesson on acids and bases, and what makes which color flower. 

Learn about how candy was made at Brown's Candy Factory (don't forget to try a sample while you are there!)

Learn about the old west, and uses for things like the stage coach. (Munchkin is dressed up here for a costume contest).

Learn about pulleys and gravity.

Learn about other countries culture and customs.

These pictures were taken during various times of the year, so not all things pictured are available year round. Many coincide with the festivals and events throughout the year at Silver Dollar City. There are many things to do besides what I have pictured. Visit the homestead and learn about the animals there, visit the schoolhouse for a history lesson, or the Wilderness Church for a Gospel Sing Along (Music and Music Appreciation). You can dip your own candles at Carries Candles, or make your own rag doll with Wagon Train Dolls. Watch a bladesmith fashion a blade, or a blacksmith make a horseshoe.

We also use vacations to learn about money. Leading up to vacation we list extra chores which can be done to earn spending money, and at the park we remind them to make wise choices, and to not spend all of their money on the first day. We remind them how long it took or how hard they worked to earn whatever amount they are thinking of spending on a potential purchase, then they decide if it is worth it to them. Wherever you go, remember that learning does not have to be done at the kitchen table!

I want to thank Crystal's Tiny Treasures for featuring this post I did about learning about money.

Crystal's Tiny Treasures Featured Me On Mom's Library

Check out my link party page to see where I am linking.


  1. Charity, this is a great post. I agree with you. It's surprising how much fun the kids can have while they 'don't know' this is a school day. With a little bit of planning ahead like you have done, they often learn more on a 'fun' day than a day of sitting at the kitchen table.

  2. I had no idea how much fun there is in Missouri! Personally I'd like to see that candy factory! Thanks so much for linking up to After School.